Deep Summer Photo Challenge: Mike Zinger, Wildcard

Remembering Summer in Whistler through the eyes of a BMX brat

by Don Stefanovich
Photos by Mike Zinger
Video by Nic Genovese
Music: “Vessel” by Zola Jesus

As falling leaves give way to snow, here’s a look back at the Deep Summer Photo Challenge’s Wildcard entry from Mike Zinger to keep you warm.

Mike Zinger’s love affair with two wheels began at an early age, riding BMX with his friends in Victoria, British Columbia, messing around and trying to take pictures that captured it the way the magazines and videos did. He and his buddies were captivated and inspired by those images and it wasn’t long before Zinger found he was able to make a career conveying that same thrill.

The shift in focus to mountain biking was inevitable.

“I made the switch to mountain biking as I got to know other people who were into it, and fell in love with the scenery, landscapes and the diversity of the sport itself,” Zinger says.

He got the opportunity share that vision of the sport when he won the Wildcard slot in the Deep Summer Photo Challenge by nearly 11,000 votes on Pinkbike.com.

On Saturday, August 11, Zinger joined the ranks of fellow contestants and industry veterans Reuben Krabbe, Justa Jeskova, Scott Markewitz, Jon Hayward and Ian Hylands in an intense three-day shooting-and-editing process.

When asked how he prepared for such a finite window of opportunity, Zinger laughs.

“Oh man, if anyone knew me leading up … to the weekend of shooting, they would know I had no plan and barely even knew the riders I was going to shoot. I went with the ‘just wing it and see what happens’ approach,” he admits. “My team was picked by whose couch I was sleeping on and who was staying there.”

The reformed BMXer borrowed a cross-country mountain bike for his maiden voyage into Whistler with his ‘team.’ Three days later he emerged with several scrapes, bruises and a four-minute edit to show for it, but seemed pretty optimistic in spite of his scars.

“Everything over all went pretty smooth, minus the mad rush across the parking lot to get it in on time.”

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